Have you noticed that turmeric is popping up everywhere lately in numerous forms? At The Vitamin Shop we address is all the talk about it just hype or is it actually true!? Turmeric has been used in Chinese and Indian systems of medicine for thousands of years. In fact many of us know it as the yellow ingredient in Indian dishes. Not only is it very flavoursome, it is also extremely therapeutic. Recently, science has started to back up the benefits of turmeric. Turmeric contains compounds with medicinal properties. These compounds are called curcuminoids, the most important of which is curcumin. Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric. Studies on curcumin have proven the following health benefits. • Strongly anti-inflammatory. Inflammation is a contributor to common Western diseases. • Powerful antioxidant. Reduces free radical damage in the body. • Improves brain function and decreases the risk of brain disease such as depression and Alzheimer's. • Lowers the risk of heart disease • May reduce cancer risk and have potent anti cancer activity. Studies are being conducted which are supporting the belief that curcumin reduces the growth of new blood vessels in tumours and contributes to the death of cancerous cells. Unfortunately, curcumin is poorly absorbed into the bloodstream, therefore, it helps to consume black pepper with it. Black pepper contains piperine which is a natural substance that enhances the absorption of curcumin by 2000%. As curcumin is fat soluble it is also a good idea to take it with a meal containing healthy fats.